Blogger David Zawadi arrested for using social media to fuel bank woes

Inspector General of Police, Joseph Boinnet. PHOTO/COURTESY
Inspector General of Police, Joseph Boinnet. PHOTO/COURTESY

A blogger has been arrested for

"peddling falsehoods about banks" amid efforts by the Central Bank to clean up the sector.

David

Zawadi

will face charges

related to misuse of social media to disseminate falsehoods against the sector, said IG Joseph Boinnet.

"Some unscrupulous members of the public have taken to social media to spread unfounded rumours and conjecture aimed at causing unnecessary fear and panic," Boinnet said.

"It's one thing to alert acquaintances about matters that are truthful and factual, but we shall not allow persons driven to malicious consideration to peddle falsehoods to mislead the public."

Boinnet added in a statement on Friday that members of the public should be wary of such messages and refrain from disseminating them, lest they fall afoul of the law.

He asked the public to seek clarifications on banking from relevant authorities and said

updates will be given as investigations unfold.

Cyber crime officers, who have camped at the CBK, recommended the arrest of the blogger whose claims included those of malpractices at the regulator.

Detectives said the claims by the blogger resulted in panic by the public and tainted the image of the CBK's bank supervision unit.

Chase Bank was

on Thursday over liquidity problems. Earlier on Friday, Boinnet

of the bank's ex-bosses and several National Bank of Kenya officials.

Central Bank Governor Patrick Njoroge said on Thursday that massive withdrawals by Chase Bank customers were fueled by

"malicious" social media reports.

He said those who fanned the reports will be pursued and prosecuted.

Rumours that began weeks ago, and not only on social media, led to

that contributed to the bank's

.

A betting company is reported to have gradually moved about Sh4 billion to another financial institution over the last few days.

By the end of Wednesday, more than Sh7.6 billion had been

s across the country.

The amount is seven times the withdrawal transaction limit placed by CBK.

Chase Bank had deposited Sh8 billion security at CBK which is well over the Sh2 billion security required from it by CBK.

Central Bank also

in October 2015

and handed its management over to the KDIC over "unsafe or unsound business conditions".

Dubai Bank is under

on August 14.

CBK said at the time that the bank was experiencing serious liquidity and capital deficiencies, raising concerns that it was unlikely to meet its financial obligation.